Friday, August 17, 2012

Sending punk bands to Russia

According to the Atlantic Wire, the Russian punk band--whose name we will adorn with asterisks because we actually have standards on this blog--was just given a 2-year jail sentence for "hooliganism motivated by religious hatred." The band ***** Riot was arrested on March 15 after performing a 40-minute "mock concert" (whatever that means) inside a Russian Orthodox church.

Now, at first I was tempted by all of the fawning coverage by the international media to support the band against the Russian legal system, which has been known to announce, on occasion, the verdict of trials before they actually occur. But I'll have to say that I am quite enamored of this particular verdict and impressed by the thought of how we could use it on "hooliganism motivated by religious hatred" here in the United States.

I'm thinking of possible applications of it even now.

But perhaps it would be better to simply ship all the punk bands we have here in the United States to Russia in the hope that they too would be put out of commission for a couple of years.

After all, these bands go around posing as if they're really dangerous and edgy. They're constantly announcing in pretentious tones how their listeners should defy all convention and stick it to the establishment, and pretend as if their calls for cultural revolution are some kind of courageous public stance. So put 'em in jail for a little while.

This would have the advantage of increasing the authenticity of their whole act, and no one would accuse them of being the posers they really are.

1 comment:

ZPenn said...

Punk is such a diverse genre now, it's really hard to generalize. There are so many genres within a genre that punk doesn't even mean what it used to. I think it is interesting to note the differences in the way freedom of speech is treated in the Unites States as compared with the world at large, and I think we should fight to maintain these freedoms wherever we can, whether it be a stance against government sanctions upon Chic-fil-a for its CEO's controversial opinions or the rights of a punk rock band to do whatever it is punk rock bands do, or the rights of individuals to decide who they want to marry. I prefer to keep the state out of our personal lives as much as possible. Of course, in the specific case of the ***** Riot, i'm not entirely sure if what they were doing would be protected by freedom of speech even in the United States, since freedom of speech is a right granted by the public. Assuming the church was private property, the owners of said property have every right to ask the punk band to leave, and if they don't I'm sure they have the legal ability to press charges. Violating someone's property rights doesn't consitute freedom of speech, it consitutes, well, "hooliganism".